With its growing popularity in the United States and the increased number of children playing it each year, most people have at least a general knowledge of the rules of traditional soccer. You can’t use hands. There’s a goalkeeper on each team. Each goal is worth one point. But what about its indoor counterpart? Combining elements of traditional soccer, basketball, and hockey, indoor soccer is a fast-paced game that can be played year round. With the burgeoning popularity of the Syracuse Silver Knights, more and more fans are attending games. To help these new fans better understand the game, what follows is a breakdown of the basics.
Where is indoor soccer played?
The field is either rectangular or oblong and the goal is recessed into the wall. Often, and in the case of the Knights, fields are located in a rink, as in ice hockey.
How many players are on the field at a time?
There are six players allowed on the field during the game, including the goalkeeper. Unlimited substitutions can be made when the ball is out of play, but if the game is in progress, one player must leave the field before another may step on.
Is there out-of-bounds?
Yes. Although the walls can be used in play, if the ball flies over the walls or hits the ceiling, play is stopped and the team that didn’t last touch the ball is awarded a free kick. One major difference between indoor and traditional soccer is that there is no offside rule in indoor.
What happens the first time a player receives a penalty card?
During play, if a foul or offense is committed, the offending player must sit in a penalty box for two minutes and his team must play short-handed.
How many points are goals worth?
There is an arc in each half of the field that determines how many points are scored for each goal. If the ball is shot from within the arc, the goal is worth two points, if it’s shot from outside, it’s worth three, much like in basketball.
The most noticeable difference between traditional and indoor soccer is the style of play. Because of the smaller field, the unlimited substitutions and the reduced number of out-of-bounds related stoppages, the pace is much faster, making the games high-scoring and exciting.